Charlie Enright and Christina Wolfe Clinch 2023 Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman Awards

In a ceremony held during the US Sailing’s National Sailing Programs Symposium on Thursday, the outstanding achievements of the best U.S. sailors of 2023 took center stage. The event, attended by family, friends, peers, competitors, and contributors to the sport of sailing, saw the recognition of the remarkable contributions made by individuals who have left an indelible mark on the world of sailing.

The prestigious 2023 Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year Award were bestowed upon Charlie Enright of Barrington, RI, and Christina Wolfe of Orcas, WA, respectively. The pair, along with fellow finalists Betsy Alison, Erika Reineke, Steve Hunt, and Allan Terhune, Jr., were lauded for their outstanding performances in the field.

Enright, as Skipper, led the 11th Hour Racing Team to a historic victory as the first American-flagged team to triumph in The Ocean Race in 2023. A culmination of over 10 years of effort for his team and more than six years for 11th Hour Racing, the win marked a significant milestone in Enright’s sailing career. Grateful for the recognition, Enright humbly acknowledged the collective effort, stating, “It’s iconic. It makes me think of all the people who have come before all of us. I’ve done a lot of sailing with some of the other finalists who were nominated, and I’ve certainly learned a lot from all of them.”

Christina Wolfe, an accomplished offshore sailor known for her doublehanded sailing with husband Justin, achieved remarkable success in 2023. Wolfe secured 1st Overall ORC, 2nd Overall IRC, and Double-handed Line Honors in the Rolex Middle Sea Race, became the first female skipper overall in the Rolex Fastnet Race, and claimed first in IRC 2 at the De Guingand Bowl, all achieved doublehanded. Expressing her surprise and gratitude, Wolfe said, “Never in a million years did I expect to be standing on this stage, let alone in the room with all of you.”

The finalists were presented with the prestigious Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year Award trophy, accompanied by specially engraved Rolex Yacht-Master timepieces. Joining an elite group of national sailors, the awardees represent the pinnacle of sailing excellence.

In January, three men and three women were selected as finalists for the 2023 Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year Awards, showcasing the diverse accomplishments of accomplished sailors across different disciplines. The nominees’ growth and depth of achievements were particularly noted by the nomination panel. These exceptional sailors, by dominating their respective classes and achieving notable successes at international and national events, have not only carved their unique paths in the sport but have also brought global recognition to sailing while proudly representing the United States. The annual awards ceremony stands as a testament to the skill, dedication, and passion exhibited by these remarkable individuals in the world of sailing.